Man survives on dumpster diving during cross-country bike ride

CHICAGO (WLS) -- Rob Greenfield of San Diego, Calif. is doing the impossible: he's biking across the country and he isn't paying a penny for food.

Greenfield calls himself an environmental activist, and that's an understatement.

"I'm riding across America inspiring people to live in a manner that's beneficial to the earth, their communities and themselves," Greenfield said.

He left San Diego on June 2 and he'll be in New York in September, preaching his message all the way.

But Greenfield isn't just biking across the country promoting the environment. He's also doing something really wild: He's a dumpster diver.

He visits super markets and other businesses that dispose of unsold but still fresh food, collecting for the needy and for himself.

"Nothing but food I find in dumpsters. From the state of Wisconsin all the way to New York, I won't eat a single thing I don't find in a dumpster," he said.

In every city he gets volunteers with cars to transport the food, and then he puts it on display as part of his message.

"I'm trying to get grocery stores to donate billions of pounds of food per year to people who need it," he said. "I'm going to give this to people if I can, but actually I'm trying to do something much bigger than a couple of carloads to people."

The 27-year-old Wisconsin native says he has dined from at least 500 dumpsters and never gotten sick. But yes, a lot of people still think he's a little goofy.

"I think that a lot of Americans think I'm more than goofy, but it's not about me. It's about doing something that's beyond myself and creating a better country," he said.

He will display his one-day dumpster haul in the city's Lincoln Park neighborhood at 5 p.m. Tuesday in the 1800-block N. Clark. Greenfield has an ongoing blog about his journey on his website.
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